Let’s get one thing out the way early on in this discussion: neither Bell Equipment nor Master Drilling has been a happy long-term hold.

Over 10 years, Master Drilling’s share price returned a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.7% and Bell has lost 24% overall, so even having a CAGR was a stretch too far for the latter. This excludes dividends in both cases, though buying cyclical companies for regular dividends is a misguided pursuit.  ..

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